Bringing music and heritage home

Two University of Edinburgh Museums projects aim to bring culture into the homes of people with health and social disadvantages across Edinburgh.

St Cecilia's Hall

The new initiatives, which will draw upon the University’s world-class collections of musical instruments, art and literature, will provide increased access to culture and heritage for those most in need.

Online music offering

The Can’t Stop the Music initiative will enable online visitors to St Cecilia’s Hall and Music Museum to enjoy the same level of expert interpretation as any on-site visitor.

Short films of instrument demonstrations, performances and interviews will be made available through a number of online channels.

The project will engage with musicians who have a deep connection with the instruments in the collection.

The instruments at St Cecilia’s Hall are a very special resource that needs to be shared. The world’s musical heritage is reflected in this Collection and we are very pleased that, through the support of Museums Galleries Scotland, this project will be making connections with cultures, reaching through and beyond Western musical traditions.

Martin ParkerMartin Parker, Head of the Reid School of Music, the University of Edinburgh

Community connections

People who struggle with online access will be supported by a project that aims to make them feel connected to the world, within their own homes.

The Community Connector: At Home with Heritage project will deliver activity packs to individuals and create a buddy system for volunteers to engage via other communication methods. 

Cultural collateral will be made available by the University, the National Library of Scotland, the National Galleries of Scotland, Age Scotland, the Thera Trust and the Social Prescribing Network.

The project will create a volunteer team, a shared Edinburgh Heritage for Health database, and a training programme to support the development of resources and activities.

 Gig Buddies and Thera Trust are thrilled to hear that the At Home with Heritage project has been funded. Any dedicated hubs for information and resources can be an incredible help to many people with a learning disability and we can’t wait to get involved with the project.

Sam MaggsThe Thera Trust

The University of Edinburgh Museums are leading on both projects, but they will be shaped and delivered with the communities they are created to support.


Both projects are funded by the Museums Galleries Scotland COVID-19 Museum Development Fund. The fund has been created to help museums to build resilience and address challenges brought about by the Coronavirus pandemic.

We look forward to developing stronger working relationships with charities, dementia support groups and other social care organisations to better understand what works best for their clients and increase their awareness of resources from UoE Museums, NLS and NGS, that can be delivered to homes and care homes via a mechanism that works safely for these communities.

Jacky MacBeathHead of Centre for Research Collections and Museums, the University of Edinburgh

Related links

University of Edinburgh Museums 

MGS COVID-19 Museums Development Fund